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Business trends

Mobile businesses reach even the poorest countries

In some places it is easier to hail a ride than turn on the faucet

A woman takes a photo with her mobile phone in Uganda. Mobile phones are widely used in countries where landline phone services are limited.   © Reuters

NEW YORK -- Mobile-based services, including money transfers and ride-hailing, have spread rapidly around the world and are becoming available in many of the poorest countries.

In some places, more people have mobile payments or apps close at hand than clean drinking water or electricity.

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